Beyond the Tracks? Reflections on Multitrack Approaches to Peace Processes
Today’s armed conflicts are often characterised by complexity, the fragmentation of parties and incoherent responses from the international community. To achieve sustainable peace in these complex contexts, peace practitioners as well as scholars recognise that national-level peace agreements are not sufficient on their own.
Peace practitioners have therefore sought to conceive – and deal with – peace processes that feature initiatives on different levels of society, ranging from community-based dialogues to high-level negotiations. This logic offers a comprehensive view on peace processes, enabling more integrated responses to building sustainable peace. However, despite increasing references to multitrack approaches in theory and practice, there is little consensus on how such a concept reflects the realities that peace practitioners face today.
Against this background, FBA, Swisspeace, the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue and the Center for Security Studies ETH Zurich have jointly initiated the project Multitrack Approaches to Peace Processes, which aims to foster conceptual understanding and to develop practical guidance for contemporary peace processes.
This publication presents the insights from a retreat with peace practitioners from five contexts, discusses lessons learned and provides ideas for further research and informed practice.